ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s second biggest airline – Shaheen Air International (SAI), has been allegedly involved in tax evasion and fraud worth billions of rupees and in this regard the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has registered an FIR against it.
According to documents available with The Express Tribune, the airline is a tax defaulter of Rs955 million.
It is pertinent to mention that the airline charged this tax from customers under the head of federal excise duty but did not deposit it in the national exchequer.
The FIR was lodged by Large Taxpayer Unit (LTU) Karachi, over a complaint made by Inland Revenue Inspector Irfan Ahmed who detailed the matter and revealed that the airline also failed to deposit sales tax returns electronically.
Shaheen’s flight operations have remained suspended since May 2018, except for special Hajj flights and the flight that brought back stranded Pakistanis in China. It was learnt that the owners of the airline have fled the country.
An official of the Karachi airport services said that Shaheen has winded up operations in the country and there is no official behind.
The FBR authorities revealed that the departments running under it were initiating swift action against tax evaders throughout the country and recoveries were being made in this regard.
The FBR officials said that action was also being taken against tax defaulters found with dues during audit and in this regard tax demand orders were also being issued.
The authority stressed that all the LTUs and Regional Tax Offices (RTOs), including Directorate General Intelligence and Investigation and Inland Revenue, were united against tax evasion.
The field officers have been given the target of recovering 30-40% amount from the issued demand orders after wrapping up the audit case, they officials added.